Texas Tech University

Conference Dedication

The Texas Tech University Teaching, Learning, and Professional Development Center is dedicating the 17th Annual Advancing Teaching and Learning Conference to the late Dr. Charlie Klein, Associate Professor in Landscape Architecture.

Charles Klein

We want to honor Charlie's memory by acknowledging his passion and dedication to teaching and his lasting legacy on his students, colleagues, and community. Charlie was an innovative teacher, nationally recognized in study abroad programs, advocate of service learning pedagogy, and an active and respected professional landscape architect.

Charlie was able to inspire his students with over 30 years of professional experience as he guided his students in experiential learning through reflection to meet the community's needs. His passion for experiential learning led him to be an early adopter and supporter of TTU Service Learning. He also participated and gave his time to support and encourage other faculty to implement service learning in their teaching. In 2008, Charlie was a Service Learning Faculty Fellow who then later served as a mentor for new service learning fellows. He implemented service learning pedological practices to allow his students to develop a deeper understanding of the skills they needed to be successful future professional landscape architects. He also produced much scholarly work on service learning and study abroad pedagogies.

One of his most notable teaching projects spanned the last decade, leading a community-focused ecotourism project in the Yucatan peninsula and Merida, Mexico. He would take students on a summer study abroad to work with rural Mayan communities to develop low-impact tourism projects. The project focused on sustaining income for the community while preserving their history, heritage, culture, and natural environment. He did this work in collaboration with colleagues from Maryland.

This work highlights Charlie's willingness and ability to collaborate with colleagues at other universities as well as fostering interdisciplinary collaboration across the TTU campus. His work with the Department of Design and Human Development and Family Studies on the USDA / NIFA Capacity Building Grant is one example of his collaborative spirit. This project known as "Ole!" focused on outdoor learning environments to combat childhood obesity through healthy and active lifestyles. He also worked on the Greenscape Design Studio that employs students as interns to design water-conserving landscapes for Lubbock area residences.

Charlie's service to the TTU community was tremendous, and over his tenure, he was appointed and received many honors and awards that show his continual dedication and passion for students. As Interim Department Chair from 2013-2016, his goal was to implement a student-centered focus on teaching and engagement. He was inducted into the Teaching Academy in 2010, and in 2012 was awarded the College Advising Award in the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources. He also served as the faculty advisor to the university's Student American Society of Landscape Architects and Sigma Lambda Alpha, a scholastic honor society that recognizes academic achievement among students in the field of landscape architecture. Charlie will be deeply missed and remain an inspiration in how to be a great teacher with a never-wavering focus on our students and their learning.

Teaching, Learning, & Professional Development Center

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    University Library Building, Room 136, Mail Stop 2044, Lubbock, TX 79409-2004
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